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Friday, May 28, 2004Although the web has given the person in the street access to more information than ever before and Google has made it easy to search through that vast pile to find what you want, typically business users need even more.For some people, particularly in business, Google and other net search engines are just not good enough,making search service providers like Factiva popular.In its pre-Factiva incarnation, it was used by librarians and other information professionals whose job it was to find and supply facts to other people.Factiva brings together information from more than 9,000 sources including newspapers, newswires, transcripts of news programmes from the BBC and other broadcasters, plus historical stock market data.It is a program for desktop machines that lets customers search for information among this pool of sources.The growth of the web as a vast corpus of data threw that role into question."In 2000 and 2001 so many times we had customers saying to us that most of this is available for free on the web," said Ms Hart, Head of Factiva.But, she said, 60% of what Factiva offers is not online for free.And, said Ms Hart, even if all the sources were available online she is sure that Factiva would still have a role to play.The reason for this is because, as Google and others are starting to realise, the sheer number of results a search system can serve up are not enough."When you do a search you're not interested in quantity," said Ms Hart, "you want relevant research and quick access to relevant results.""
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